Airbus and Tata advance defense manufacturing in India with C295 aircraft

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Airbus and Tata advance defense manufacturing in India with C295 aircraft
Credit: © Reuters.

Airbus S.A.S. is deepening its cooperation with Tata Advanced Systems, a move set to enhance India's defense manufacturing capabilities. Jorge Tamarit-Degenhardt, who leads the C295 program at Airbus, is steering this initiative that aims to bolster India's defense supply chain and introduce specialized new products.

The partnership's current focus is the C295 military transport aircraft. A significant step forward in this collaboration will be the establishment of a final assembly line in Vadodara, which is expected to be operational by November 2024. This facility will concentrate on producing the C295 aircraft, with a particular emphasis on developing electric harness technology.

This expansion builds on an existing agreement from 2021 when the Indian Air Force committed ₹21,395 crore (INR100 crore = approx. USD12 million) for the acquisition of 56 C295 aircraft to replace their aging fleet. The deal includes the delivery of an Indian-manufactured unit by 2026, with component production already in progress at Airbus's Hyderabad facility.

The efforts align with India's national defense strategies, which include indigenization lists, the Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020, and the development of defense industrial corridors. These strategic moves are designed not only to upgrade India's military assets but also to strengthen its position as a key player in defense technology manufacturing.

In tandem with Airbus's initiatives, Embraer is also considering setting up manufacturing operations within India, signaling a broader interest and confidence in the country’s potential as a hub for defense production.

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